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09/19/2022|Hintersdorf GmbH

Automation through Retrofitting instead of a new Investment

Hintersdorf GmbH & Co. KG was founded in 2014 in Rahden as an engineering company. In just a few years it has established itself as a reliable service provider for manufacturing blow molds, casting molds and extrusion tools as well as for assembly and measuring devices, prototype construction and small specialpurpose machines.

5 axis cnc machine with automation - DMU 60 eVo linear & PH Cell 300
After moving to a new plant, DMG MORI retrofitted the DMU 60 eVo linear with a PH Cell 300. As a result, Hintersdorf can now produce unmanned during night and weekend shifts.

International customers, particularly from the automotive industry, chemical industry and heating engineering put their trust in the expertise of the almost 30-strong team. A high-performance array of machines is a part of the total range of services and includes new machining centers and turning machines from DMG MORI. The machine tool manufacturer had already provided considerable support during the founding of the company by offering attractive financing solutions from DMG MORI Finance. The latest investment was a DMU 60 eVo linear, which was retrofitted with a PH Cell 300 to ensure that Hintersdorf can continue to produce even more efficiently – around the clock.

Holger Hintersdorf, Managing Director Hintersdorf
Holger Hintersdorf; Managing Director; Hintersdorf GmbH & Co. KG

„The production process runs autonomously for long periods and can even be maintained throughout the weekend. This means that investment in the PH Cell 300 can pay for itself in less than one year!"

Integral range of services 

“After founding the engineering company, it quickly became clear to us that an on-site manufacturing facility would be the perfect complement to these services,” says Holger Hintersdorf looking back at his company’s first year. As a toolmaker with specialist training as a mechanical engineering technician, the experienced designer recognized that an integral range of services would be more flexible and would also deliver the best quality at all times. “Existing colleagues were won over by the idea and put all their support behind my team.”

Skilled specialists as the backbone of success 

Nine machining centers and turning machines from DMG MORI
Hintersdorf has already invested in nine machining centers and turning machines from DMG MORI with the support of DMG MORI Finance.

Holger Hintersdorf still considers skilled engineers to be the backbone of the company: “We have toolmakers that are not responsible for machining but instead understand every detail of the complicated design and who also assemble the tools themselves.” The team is thus able to work extremely independently and over and again contribute ideas for optimization. Holger Hintersdorf maintains the high level of manufacturing with an in-house training program, but has also noticed that skilled staff and trainees are getting harder to find: “This is the reason we need to continuously optimize our manufacturing strategies to remain competitive.” This begins with the development and design of new tools. “Our customers ask us to get involved very early on in the process to ensure we can find the best possible solutions,” according to Holger Hintersdorf. Sophisticated jigs are used to make machining more efficient during the manufacturing process.

Company founded with support from DMG MORI Finance 

Pallet changer PH Cell 300 - setup station
The setup station of the PH Cell 300 enables the next job to be prepared while production continues.

When it comes to CNC technology, Hintersdorf has relied on DMG MORI since the beginning – as a machine supplier and as a finance partner. “DMG MORI Finance made our start easier with attractive conditions,” says Holger Hintersdorf looking back. Sven Stolle, an experienced Area Sales Manager (ASM), was also a great help in choosing the machines. To start with, they comprised a DMU 75 monoBLOCK, a DMC 850 V and a used NL 3000. Hintersdorf has continued to invest since then and added a DMU 60 eVo linear in 2019. “The speed, acceleration and precision of the machine is ideal for our applications and we are also able to utilize our work space optimally for our range of components,” is the opinion of Holger Hintersdorf regarding the 5-axis universal machine. Due to space restrictions, he was initially unable to automate the DMU 60 eVo linear. As there was already a new plant in planning when the DMU 60 eVo linear was being purchased, Holger Hintersdorf ordered the machine prepared for automation: “There was really no way to avoid this, as we need to utilize our machines to the maximum while also tackling a shortage of skilled labor.” Although it is also possible to retrofit a machine that has not been prepared, the approach significantly alleviates the effort. This was confirmed when moving into the new plant. DMG MORI retrofitted the DMU 60 eVo linear with an PH Cell 300 within one week.

Double the spindle runtime 

The investment in the PH Cell 300 paid off quickly, explained Holger Hintersdorf: “Production continues autonomously for long periods and can even be maintained over the weekend. We have someone come in from time to time to exchange the parts.” It was possible to double the spindle runtime. Another argument in favor of the PH Cell 300 was its flexibility: “We mainly produce individual parts, prototypes or very small series.” With 20 spaces for pallets up to a size of 320 × 320 mm, the configuration of the storage racks is ideal.

Automation and digitization for flexible work planning

Automation solution PH Cell 300 - unmanned production
By retrofitting a flexible PH Cell 300, Hintersdorf can now produce unmanned during night and weekend shifts.

The next investment is proof that Holger Hintersdorf is more than satisfied with the automation. Another DMU 60 eVo linear with a PH Cell 300 will be installed in 2023. Moreover, sustainability and digitization are becoming increasingly important for the future. “A solar power system means that we will be able to cover the majority of our power requirements ourselves. Deliveries are made with an electric vehicle and we use regional suppliers as much as possible.” Digitization has meant that Hintersdorf is well on its way to networked manufacturing. When machine service is needed, the team relies on fast and transparent interaction through my DMG MORI. Holger Hintersdorf sees further potential: “Digital solutions for work planning will enable us to react more flexibly in the long term.”

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